Fascinating article, titled “Atari Teenage Riot: The Inside Story Of Pong And The Video Game Industry’s Big Bang“ over at Buzzfeed.
“…while today’s blockbuster games are largely created by hundred-strong teams at bankrolled developers, the men who created and crafted Pong embodied the bootstrap start-up culture that typifies the most exciting edges of today’s tech landscape. They were knocked back by old men in drab suits who said games weren’t going to be big business. But games were going to be big business, even those started in unassuming surroundings. And nothing was going to stop them.”
The article is a great companion piece to a book I read a few years ago called “The Ultimate History of Video Games: From Pong to Pokemon–The Story Behind the Craze That Touched Our Lives and Changed the World“. If you have any interest in how we’ve ended up with Skyrim, Black Ops 2 and Far Cry 3, you have to take a look at where we came from and The Ultimate History does a great job of really illustrating that trajectory. It’s a bit textbook-y at times, but all in all a pretty fascinating read. Also fitting nicely with these two is Brian Ashcraft’s “Arcade Mania: The Turbo-charged World of Japan’s Game Centers“. A great look into the rise of arcade culture in Japan as well as all the development & growth of a number of game genre staples.
Books? Check ’em out.
Evolution of Nintendo consoles and handhelds: